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Phuket's main beach in Patong - before the crowds come in.  <img src='http://www.guidegecko.com/images/spyglass1.png' align='texttop' /> Click for full image
Travel Guide > Asia > Thailand > Phuket

Phuket Travel Guide

  
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Phuket pronounced "pu-ket", is Thailand's largest island. It is 48 km in length, 21 km at its widest, and is in Southern Thailand, on the west-facing Andaman Sea coastline, suspended from the southern tip of Phang Nga Province by a pair of short but substantial road bridges.

Phuket nestles in balmy Andaman Sea waters on Thailand's Indian Ocean coastline 862 kilometres south of Bangkok.

Phuket formerly derived its wealth from tin and rubber, and enjoyed a rich and colourful history. The island was on one of the major trading routes between India and China, and was frequently mentioned in foreign trader’s ship logs.

In recent times, though, Phuket's top earner has been tourism, which has transformed the island into Thailand's wealthiest province. The west coast of Phuket was hit severely by the Indian Ocean tsunami of December 2004, but almost no evidence of the damage now remains.

Patong Beach can get very crowded.  <span style='white-space:nowrap;'><img src='http://www.guidegecko.com/images/spyglass1.png' align='texttop' /> Click to enlarge</span>

Phuket enjoys great popularity as a travel destination. Most beaches are on the west coast, with Patong Beach the most famous and most crowded beach. Phuket Town lies to the south-east of Phuket Island and the airport is in the north.

Phuket is one of Thailand's premier tourist destinations and basic English is very widely spoken, especially in the beach areas. That said, even a little Thai will draw smiles and can be useful in the less touristy areas of Phuket Town.

Climate & When to go to Phuket

Phuket is hot and humid throughout the year.

The hot season is generally considered to be from March to early May. During the summer monsoon season from May to October, mornings and afternoons are still sunny and clear, but it tends to rain in the evenings and water clarity goes down.

Locals consider November to February the "cool" season, and the weather is quite tolerable, much more so than in the tourism centers around the Gulf coast. It's comparable to Florida's summer weather in temperature and intensity of rain storms: 25-33 deg C, flying clouds, short and thunderous rainfalls in the afternoons and evenings. Surfing is possible off the western beaches.

Hotels come in all budget levels on Phuket. Pictured here is the Marriott Hotel near the airport.  <span style='white-space:nowrap;'><img src='http://www.guidegecko.com/images/spyglass1.png' align='texttop' /> Click to enlarge</span>

Practicalities

Nationwide television, cable TVs, local cable TV channels are available in Phuket especially in tourist spots.

International newspapers and magazines are available at some bookstores in downtown and tourist spots, local English radio can be found throught Phuket at Phuket FM Radio see the What's On Page for latest events and on 91.5 FM

Landline telephones, satellite phones, all mobile phone systems, high-speed internet (ADSL), post offices and parcel services are available in Phuket.

Your personal mobile phone can be used while traveling in Thailand using a Thailand SIM card

Go Go Bars dominate the nightlife options on Patong Beach.  <span style='white-space:nowrap;'><img src='http://www.guidegecko.com/images/spyglass1.png' align='texttop' /> Click to enlarge</span>






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